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SafeAbility: Safe and Able to Work

For Employers | For Workers | For Service Providers

What is SafeAbility?

With one in eight Canadians considered to have a disability, the concept of a health and safety program for this community is long overdue. SafeAbility answers the call of an untapped market by providing employers, job seekers, workers with disabilities or injuries and the community with an inclusive health and safety training and awareness program that benefits all stakeholders.

Thank you to the SafeAbility program contributors
Link Up and the WSIB are grateful to the following agencies and organizations for their valuable time and input into the development of the SafeAbility program.

Injury is a major health issue with a severe impact on the lives of all people. Health Canada states that injury is the leading cause of death of youth and among the leading causes of hospitalization for children, youth and seniors. In 2004, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) reported over 94,000 work-related, lost-time injuries in Ontario alone. When calculated in terms of lost productivity and time, insurance claims and potential lawsuits, the final tally climbs into the millions. Workplace injuries stem from many causes, including physical, chemical or biological hazards. SafeAbility can help injured workers re-enter the labour force with an increased sense of their rights and responsibilities, as well as the knowledge needed to remain a productive and safer employee.

Disabled worker endorses the SafeAbility concept
Read her inspiring story here.

Developed by Link Up Employment Services for Persons with Disabilities and a broad range of disability support providers in partnership with WSIB, SafeAbility provides valuable, accessible and current information on occupational health and safety (OH & S). The program addresses rights and responsibilities for workers with disabilities and injuries that can be used during employment preparation, during the job search, or after the job has started. Job coaches and other support persons will also greatly benefit from this information.

Adaptable, transferable and transparent, SafeAbility is a tool that has the potential to empower hundreds of thousands of workers with disabilities and injured workers across the province. In Toronto alone, more than 117,000 clients are supported by over 90 employment agencies serving the disability community and injured workers. Imagine these numbers swelling with disabled workers safe and secure in the knowledge of a healthy workplace, and a productive, stable workforce of which they are a part.

Objectives of SafeAbility are to:

  • Promote OH & S awareness within disability communities and to injured workers across Ontario
  • Enhance employment support provider services with resources that can be delivered to job seekers with disabilities and injured workers through a unique, accessible training model and by electronic media
  • Help clients integrate the principles of OH & S into their future work accomplishments.

Learning outcomes of SafeAbility include:

  • An increase in knowledge and safety practices by workers with disabilities and injured workers
  • Better job preparation and increased employer confidence in disabled employees and in returning injured workers
  • A more marketable client who has the confidence to do the job safely
  • Awareness of OH & S rights and responsibilities
  • Knowledge of safety questions to ask during an interview and on the job
  • Information that service providers (attendants, job coaches, interpreters, job developers, etc.) can use to integrate an OH & S perspective into their delivery strategies.

Other potential outcomes include safer work environments and work practices, an increase in employment of people with disabilities and fewer injuries in the workplace. Course content includes:

  • Controlling hazards
  • Personal protective equipment
  • Hygiene and emergency facilities
  • Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS)
  • Health and safety alarms
  • Knowing where to turn regarding safety concerns in the workplace
  • Effective questioning
  • Being prepared for emergencies
  • Knowing what to do in case injury occurs
  • Health and safety checklist.

… and much more! The training package is enhanced with current literature, accessible handouts and community resources where learners can obtain more information to build on learning outcomes.

As occupational health and safety knowledge grows, the SafeAbility program will gradually expand across the province and be available to all workers across multiple sectors, and the general public as well.

SafeAbility is not intended as a replacement for workplace orientation or other health and safety training. All employers are obligated to provide this type of training under the Ontario Health and Safety Act (OH & SA).


Find out more about SafeAbility training package options and pricing.


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